Monday, December 20, 2010

An Upper Room

Doesn't that sound romantic?   What else do you call a gorgeous second floor space that houses guests, toys, crafts, sewing supplies and a television?  Multipurpose room just doesn't do this spot justice because it truly is a beautiful, cozy, romantic space.

This past week I had the great pleasure of working with Leah to whisk her sweet Upper Room into guest ready shape.  After looking at some pictures of her room online, I suggested she buy some extra storage boxes.  We began in the closet which, happily, is quite large.  Leah had a lot of items already organized, so we took out everything that did not have a home, and sorted it.  

What I appreciated so much about Leah was that she really wanted to have her grandchildren's toys, games and craft supplies easily accessible to them.  So that is where we started.  We put all the games on the lower shelf so that the kids could reach them easily.  We stored gift wrap, cards and gifts in the baskets on the top shelf.  Then we put a box in the corner of the floor for tall rolled items. Anything that could go into appropriate drawers went there.  

Next we emptied this space deep in the closet.  There were a few items here that made more sense stored in the basement.

We took 2 large plastic bins filled with fabric and put them in the newly emptied space.  It may look tight, but Leah can actually fit in there and get to her fabric...and since it's in clear bins, she can easily see what she wants.  (The bins are at the very bottom on the floor.)

Our next project was the toy shelf.  This is the granddaughter area.  We sorted through the toys and Leah did a great job of purging.  

She had purchased some fantastic metal storage baskets so we put all the girlie toys into them and stacked the shelves.  

Finally, we put all the dolls and stuffed animals into a basket on top.  Leah has this pretty cover on the shelf to keep the room looking polished.  We tucked the stroller into the space where the boxes of fabric had been before.

The rest of the room needed some rearranging.  We moved the couch over to make room for the basket drawer unit.

Ta-da!  Now guests have a spot to put items when the couch becomes a bed.  As well, we gave Leah what my mom would call a "couch basket"...a place for the remote, pen and paper and all those items you wish you didn't have to get up to go get.  It also gave more focus to the art...which is gorgeous!

Finally, since the little drawers had moved...

we pushed this beautiful t.v. unit over to cover an outlet, and then moved the chair beside the door.  We cleared the top of the unit and put 2 lovely boxes on top that are a great match to the room.  The lamp fit nicely into the corner to give light to the sewing table area.

So?  Beautiful, cozy, romantic?

With time left over, we tackled the pantry/computer area as well.  By moving a filing cabinet from the pantry side of the computer desk to the office side, we ended up with enough space for Leah to purchase another shelf for more storage if needed (under the black double hanging baskets).  We also pulled all the pantry items out and resorted them into categories...baking, soups, snacks, etc..

It was a productive morning.  Thanks for sharing your spaces with me Leah!

Monday, December 13, 2010

More Holiday Fun

Not only is Darla the best BF a girl could ever dream up in her head, she is also very generous about letting me experiment.  She is always up for rearranging, reorganizing, painting or really any new decorating idea I might want to try.  Her house has given me hours of practice so BIG thanks for that to you Darla!!

So, a few weeks ago I got to work on her 2010 Christmas look.  Here are some of the results.

Darla's home has lots of great opportunities to add a little zip that are up and out of the way...

but that doesn't minimize the impact!  (I LOVE that fabby deer plate)

How about a handy spot to store a few extra little pressies?

What this space is missing however, is a mantle.  We were able to solve that challenge last year...

What is really fun is how easy going Darla is about putting stuff away for awhile, which makes it very exciting to deck out an entire shelf

or china cabinet.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Easy Christmas Punch

A very merry December 1st to you all!  For those of you who cringe at the thought of decorating for Christmas, here are some easy tips that pack a lot of punch!

Take your couch from ordinary... deck the halls in about 3 seconds flat.

Or how about taking your wall art from everyday to holiday with two easy moves?

Why not switch out your regular look

...for some festive glam?

None of these ideas took much time.  What they did take was a bit of forethought.   Keep your eye out over the year for holiday items that could work in the same spot as your day to day favourites. I am a big fan of switching out decor rather than adding it during the holidays.  Less clutter and chaos keeps that space of yours feeling calm and peaceful, but gives a cheery holiday look that will welcome family and friends.

I store my items in labelled plastic bins.  At holiday time I bring them up, switch it out, and store the day to day items back in the bins until it's time to take the holiday stuff down...then I switch it out again.  Easy, breezy.